I am not a mental health professional, therefore, I am not qualified to offer help in this area. However, what I know and what I see is that there are a lot, A LOT, of people who are depressed due to their long-term unemployment (LTU is what I'll call this disease). It is treatable. It is even curable. The treatment and cure require visits to a mental health professional and that costs money.
One of the other bi-products of LTU is that health insurance coverage can lapse due to the cost.
Here we have a double-whammy, can't get the help because you're unemployed and can't afford it. It just isn't right.
Here is my plea to the mental health community, offer clinics for mental health help for the unemployed. Heck, partner with the Dept of Labor if you need official documentation of unemployment. Offer group therapy in suburban areas where the professional unemployed numbers run high. This depression is not just a problem for the poor, but also for the wealthy, who are having a much harder time adjusting to the stigma of not having a job.
As we look at the less than positive outlook for jobs in our country, we must invest in helping them cope with this LTU disease. It is going to be a year or two before it is predicted to be better. That is a long time.
What can be done to offer affordable mental and physical health care to the unemployed? There are answers. We just need to get creative and not wait for government to figure it out.
There are resources in every community for emergency services, food cupboards, counseling, etc. Ask around and you will start figuring it out. Unfortunately, it isn't always so easy.
Hannah Morgan speaks and writes about job search and career strategies. She founded CareerSherpa.net to educate professionals on how to maneuver through today’s job search process. Hannah was nominated as a LinkedIn Top Voice in Job Search and Careers and is a regular contributor to US News & World Report. She has been quoted by media outlets, including Forbes, USA Today, Money Magazine, Huffington Post, as well as many other publications. She is also author of The Infographic Resume and co-author of Social Networking for Business Success.